Police sergeant accused of surrendering guns using false name

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A Philadelphia Police sergeant has been suspended, accused of giving a fake name when surrendering guns at a police station.

A Philadelphia Police sergeant is facing charges, accused of providing false identification to law enforcement when surrendering fire arms at a police station.

28-year-old Brandon Ruff is charged with one count of False Identification to Law Enforcement Authorities.

The district attorney's office says that on August 3, 2014, Sgt. Ruff, then assigned to the 16th District, walked into the 35th District headquarters in civilian clothing carrying a bag containing three handguns.

He allegedly tried to surrender the weapons, saying the guns belonged to a family member.

In an effort to determine if the guns were stolen or used in a crime, 35th District officers asked Sgt. Ruff for his name and date of birth in order to record the interaction.

Ruff allegedly provided a fake name, responding with the alias "Ryan Jones" and a fabricated date of birth.

According to the D.A., Ruff got agitated and left the building. Outside, other officers from the 35th District noticed a bulge in his waistband and discovered his privately-owned handgun.

Ruff continued to refuse requests for identification and his permit to carry that handgun, the district attorney says.

Once back inside the station, an officer discovered Sgt. Ruff's police identification.

All three guns he turned in came back to different owners, with one having been reported stolen out of South Philadelphia in 2010.

An investigation by the Department's Internal Affairs Bureau and the Philadelphia District Attorney's Office led to Ruff's was arrest.

Ruff has been suspended from the police department for thirty days with the intent to dismiss.

Ruff's civil attorney, Michael Pileggi, says the allegation against Ruff is just wrong.

Pileggi says, "It's a fabrication."

He maintains that Ruff, in turning in the guns, told police the source and properly identified himself, then he got a phone call.

"He went outside to take the phone call. Next thing he knows five, six, seven officers surround him, place tazers on his chest and his ribs," Pileggi said.

In August Ruff filed a federal lawsuit against the department for unlawful arrest, excessive force and a violation of his first amendment rights.

His attorney says today's action was a classic case of retaliation.

Pileggi says it is his client's right to fight to retain his job. He'll also be involved in those two court cases - one a criminal case where the sergeant is the defendant, and the other, a federal civil case, where he is the plaintiff.
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